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Full text of "Lucina sine concubitu : A letter humbly address'd to the Royal Society : in which is proved by most incontestible evidence, drawn from reason and practice, that a woman may conceive and be brought to bed without any commerce with man .."

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Lucinajine Concubitu. 

L E T T E R 

Hilmbly addrefs'd to the 


^ ( Prke One Shllling ) 


hucinafine Concuhitu^ 


L E T T E R 

Humbly addrefs^d to the 



Is proved by mofl: Inconteftible Eyidence, 
drawn from Reafon and Pradlice, that a 
WoMAN may conceive and be brought to 
Bed without any Commerce with Man. 

Ore omnes <verfie in Zephyros Jiant rupihus altis^ 
Exceptantque le^ves auras, et fcepe fine ullis 
Conjugiis <vento gra<vid^ (mirabile didu) 
Saxa per, et fcopulos et depreffas convalles 
Diffugiunty ^c, ViRG. Geprgic. 3* 

flur ego defperemfieri fine conjugemater, 
' Et parere inta^o, dummodo cafia, viro ? 

OviD. Fafl. ^l 

Or as other Authors fing, 
Thefrolic Wind that hreathes the Spring, 
Zephyr nxjith Aurora playing, 
As he met her once a Maying, 
FiWdher <vjith thee a Daughter fair^ 
So huxom, blithe, and dehonnair. 

' Milton's L'AlIegr©J 


L O N D O N : 

Printed ; And Sold by M, C o o p e r, al 

the (jlcbe. in, 17^:00 

' ( n 

Vi .»» 1 »ii ' ' ' . ' ' ' ■■■'■> — « I — '*_ 


L E T T E R 

ttumbly addrefs*d to the 



TH E great Eilcouragement you 
fliew to all learned Inveftiga- 
tions of Nature (witnefs thofe 
excellent Treatifes publiihed every Year 
iti your Philofophical Tranfadions) em- 
boldens me to lay before yooi a Difcovery, 
whieh I believe is entirely new, and which 
I am fure will equal any thing that has 
been offered to the World fmce Philofo- 
phy has been a Science. Excufe my Pre- 
fumption, and forbear ycur Cenfures, till 
you have read my Narrative. No lefs than 
B fifteen 

(2 ) 

fifteen Years of my Life have been fpent 
in bringing this Arcanum to a Maturity ; 
and when both Theory and Praaice had 
confirmed me in it, my firft Thoughts in- 
ciined nie to go over into Frante^ and put 
up for the Prize at Bourdeaux^ where Phi- 
lofophers fhew Problems, as Gardeners do 
Carnations at a Florifl's Feaft. But con- 
fidering with myfelf that your iiluftrious 
Society might probably efleem yourfelves 
afFronted, if you had not the Maidenhead 
of my Secretj and at the fame time dif- 
daining to come in Competition with the 
lower Race of Philofophers, who write 
sbout Tides and Eclipfes, and Laws of 
Gravitation, the trivial Amufements of idle 
Speculatifts, and Almanack-makers ! I fay, 
out of reverence for your eminent Body, 
and fome Degree of Pride in Conjunftion, 
I refolved to appeal at once to the Pub- 
hc, and more particularly to addrefs my- 
felf to your Worfhips. Not to keep you 
any longer in Sufpence, I have found out, 
and am going to prove by mofl in- 


( 3 ) 

conteftable Evidence, that a Woman may 
conceive and be brought to Bed, without 
any Commerce with Man. This, Gentle» 
men, I dare fay, you will allow to be a 
very wonderful Difcovery • and though I 
might eafily fatisfy People of your pene- 
trating Iniight into the Works of Nature, 
with a mere phyiical Account of human 
Seed, and the Anatomy of a Female 
Womb, yet as I am to combat the Sim- 
pHcity of the Ignorant, and the Preju- 
dices of the Perverfe, I will defcribe at 
large what firft fuggefi:ed this Thought to 
me, and how I proceeded afterwards from 
Conjefture to Demonfl:ration, 

The Lot which Providence afiigned me 
in Life, was to pradlife Phyfick in a Coun- 
try Town ; to v/hich I united the Sifieriy 
Science of Man-Midwifry ; and though 
it ill becomes any one to boaft of his 
own Merit, yet I will venture to affert, 
that in the Courfe of my Pradice, I 
have helped near as many People into the 
B 2 Wcrld 


World as ever I helped out of it : which 
rendered my Fame fo great for obftetric 
Operations, that I engroffed the Cuftom 
of all the Breeding Women in the fruit- 

ful County of — • . But not to trou- 

ble you with more of my private Hiftory 
than is neceffary, as I was fitting alone 
one Afternoon, fmoking my Tojimeridian 
Pipe, I received a Meflage from a neigh- 
bouring Gentleman, informing me tha^ 
his Daughter was dangeroufly ill, and 
defiring my immediate Attendance. When 
I was arrived, and had examined the 
young Lady concerning her Complaints, 

I was furprized to find in her all the 
Symptoms of Pregnancy ; but as I know 
very well how tenderly Ladies value 
their Reputations, even after they have 
loft them, I withdrew the Father afide 
into a feparate Room for the Sake of 
Privacy, and there with great Concern, 
told him what my Office obliged me to 
declare, that his Daughter was apparent^ 
]/ v;ith Chiid, and very near the Time 


( 5) 

of her Labour. Tlie old Gentleman 
was ftruck with Horror at the News, 
and immediately rufhing into the Cham- 
ber, upbraided both his Wife and Daugli^ 
ter in the bittereft Terms, for conceai-- 
ing fo important a Secret from him, and 
bringing fuch a Difgrace on the Family. 
The young Lady turned up a Face of 
inexpreffible Lmocence and Amazement, 
and immediately fainted away into her 
Mother's Arms. 'Tis ufually obferved^ 
I know, that all Profeffions which de- 
light in Blood, from the Phylician down 
to the Butcher (who are employed to dif- 
burthen Nature of her Numbers, left the 
Wprld ftiould grow too populous) out- 
live the Senfations of Humanity, and ne«- 
ver fuffer their Minds to be interrupted 
with Pity : but though I had been long 
ufed to the Sight of Mifery, and had ac- 
quired a fufficient Conftancy of Features, 
there was fomething in the Scene before 
me too powerful for Cuftom, and I really 
foond myfelf inclining to Compaffion. 



But the good old Lady foon put a Stop 
to thefe Womanifh Emotionsof my Spirit, 
falling upon me with the moft outrageous 
Abufe, for daring to afperfe ber Daiigh" 
ter's Reputation in that wicked ruffiajily 
Manner^ vowing it was a Li^, -a damn'd 
Lie^ and fhe wonder'd her Hufhand could 
hear it without Refentment. To all which 
I repUed with fome Acrimony, that I was 
not ufed to be treated with fuch Language, 
that I knew very well how difagreeable 
a Truth it muft be to a Parent's Ear, but 
fmce my Office could not protefl: m-e 
from Abufe, my Honour oUiged me to 
take my Leave : And fo making a Bow 
I left the Family to grow calm at Lei- 
fure, not doubting but I ftiould have a 
fecond Summons, when they had reafoned 
themfelves into Temper. Accordingly 
a Chariot came to fetch me the next 
Morning \ and though the Mother could 
hardly bridle in her Paffion, and the young 
Lady protefted every Moment fhe was 
innocent, Aitairs were now too far ad- 



vanced to be concealed, and about Five 
in the Afternoon, I conducfled into the 
World the Uttle malicious Witnefs, whofe 
Evidence was fo fatal to the young Lady's 
Charafter, and fo necelTary to the Vin- 
dication of mine. Yet ftill, after this 
feemingly conclulive Convidion, fhe con- 
tinued to make thc fame earneft Decla- 
rations to all who vifited her ^ and one 
Day as I was iitting alone with her, after 
fhe was pretty well recovered from the 
Shock of her DeHvery, fhe caught me 
haftily by the Hand, and with many 
Tears, and many AfTeverations of Inno- 
cence, begged of Heaven to blaft her im- 
mediately with Lightning, if ever fhe had 
known a Man. Such earneft Proteftati, 
ons, delivered with fuch an Air of Truth 
and accompanied with fo many moving 
Tears, wrought upon me fo ftrongly, that, 
I knew not how, I found rayfelf ftrange- 
ly inclined to beheve her, even againft 
the Remonftrances of Reafon and Expe- 
rience. FuU of what flie had faid, I re- 
turned Home in a very thoughtfui Mood, 



and continued uneafy and perplexed for 
a great while ; till one Day happening 
to take up Mr. WoGllaJlorC^ Religion of 
Nature delineated, I fell accidentally upon 
a PaiTage, which ftruck fuch a fudden 
Light on my Imagination, that I fhall 
beg Leave to quote it at large, as the 
Ground-work and Foundation of my 
whole Syftem. 

That great Philofopher difputing whe^ 
ther human Souls are traduced from Pa- 
rents to their Children, or fupernaturally 
conveyed into the Foetus at the Time of 
its Birth (which is a very worthy Subjed 
of philofophic Enquiry^ becaufe impoffibk 
to be determined, and much a*kin to that 
learned Difquifition of old,* whether Eggs 


* CenfQrims fays, many of the old Philofophers af- 
ferted the Eternity of the World upon this excellent 
invincible Argument, quod negent cmnino -^bjfe repe- 
rin\ avefne mte an ova generata Jint ; cum et ovum 
Jtneave^ et avlsfme ovo gigni nonpoffit. This intereft« 
ing Queftion was once m.uch agitated, as may be 



Br the Chicken m them are firft created) iri 
the fifth Sedlioii of his incomparable 
Work has the following rcmarkable Pafr 
fage :-= — — -" If then the Semlna oiit of 
" which Animals are produced, are (as I 
*^ doubt not) Animalcula already formed ^ 
*^ which beiiig diftributed aboutj cfpecial- 
" ly iri fome oppoirtune Places, are taken 
*^ in with Aliment^ br perhaps the very 
** Air 5 being feparated in the Bodies of 
^* Males by Strainers proper to every. 
^^ Kind, and theti lodged iri their feminal 
*' Veffels db there receive fome kind of 
" Addition and Influerice • and then be« 
^^ ing transferired into the Wombs of the 
^' Feriiales, are there nourifhcd more plen- 
*^ tifiilly, arid grow tod big to be longer 
" confined : I fay if this be the Cafe^ &Ci** 
And again, *' I cannot but conclude that 
^^ there are Animalcula of every Tribe 
C " originally 

ieen by Sdacrohius and Pktarch, who calls k 
X9V m^€Kv\^^* 

^^ originally iformed by the almlgtity Pa- 
" rent, to be the Seed of all future Ge- 
" neratlons ; ^nd it is certain the Analogy 
^^ of Nature in other Inftances, and mi- 
" crofcopical Obfervations, do ftrongly 

" abet what I have faid/' Thefe are 

the Words of the great and learned Mr. 
WooUaJion^ which I had no fooner read, 
than I was inftantly thrown into a Reveney 
and began to refled: with myfelf, that if 
fuch little Embryos or Animakida are {o 
difperfed about, and taken in at the 
Mouth with Air or Aliment 3 and if no- 
thing more is required than a certain hot 
Bed for them to dilate and expand them- 
felves, till they grow too big to be long- 
er confined, after the Manner of Seeds in 
a Cucumber-Frame : I fay, if this be the 
whole Myftery of Generation (and Expe- 
riment has lince fully convinced me that 
it is fo) I began to queftion, why might 
not the Foetus be as compleatly hatched in 
thefeminal Vefiels of the Woman, as whea 
it paffes through the Organs of both 

Sexes r 

( II ) 

Sexes ? Why (hould the A^ilmalculiun or 
little Animal go fuch a tedious Progrefs, 
make fuch a round-aboutTour, when there 
is fo much nearer a Road, fo much Ihort- 
er a Cut into Day-Hght ? As to what 
the great Philofopher mentions of Strain- 
ers in the Bodies of Males, that was plain- 
ly owing to his Want of Skill in Anato- 
my 5 and the only Doubt now remaining 
with me was, whether Animalcula did 
really float about in the Air, and llide 
down the Throat as he defcribed ? for I 
had been ufed to think they were origi^ 
nally lodged in the Loins of the Males \ 
But if Mr. WoollaftorC% Hypothefis could 
be prdved, the Confequence, I thought, 
would then be eafy and undeniable. Here 
again I was at a Stand ; all before mo 
was Darknefs and Doubt ^ I knew not 
if there were any fuch Animalcula, or if 
there were, I fuppofed them too fmall to 
be difcovered by the naked Eye, and tho' 
perhaps they might be difcernible w^irh 
the Help of a Microfcope^ yet I knew 
C g nQl 

( 12 ) 

not where to feek for thofe opportu^e 
Places, hinted at by the great Metaphy- 

In this fecond Perplexltyj Fprtune agairt 
ftept in to my Affiftance, and my Doubts 
were unriddled by the following Pafiagc 
in Virgil's Georgicks : 

Ore omnes verfa in Zephyrosjianf rupibus 

altis , 
Exceptantq.', leves auras 5 etfape ftite ullis 
Conjugiis vento gravidce (mirabile didlu) 
Saxa per ef fcopulos ef depreffas convalles 
Di£ugiunfi non Eure fuos^ne^ue Solisad 

Jn Boream Caurumque^ auf unde nigerrimu% 

Nafcifur^ tt pluvio confrijlaf frigore ccelum^ 


( 13 ) 
Thus tranflated by Mr. Dryden 5 

^he Mares to Cliffs of ruggedRoch repair^ 
And with wide Nofirilsfnuffthe wefiern Air: 
TFhen (wo?7drousfo relate) theTarentWind^ 
Without the Stallion^ frofagates the Kind, 
Then fir'd with amorous Rage^ they take 

their Flight 
^hro' Plains^ and mount the HiU's unequaj 

^or to the Northy nor to the rifng Bun^ 
Nor Southward to the rainy Regions run, 
]Buf boring fo the Wefl^ and hovWing fhere^ 
fFith g^aping Mouths they draw prolifc Air, 

Nqw it is well known that this fame 
Virgil was a great Natural Philofopher, 
as well as a Poet and a Farrier 5 and here 
\7eXee he confidently aflerts, that it was 
very common for Mares to become preg- 
pant, without any Coition^ only by turning 


( i4 ) 
their Faces to the Weft, and fnuffing up 
the Wind m that Quarter : But a!l Natii- 
ralifts being agreed that there is a great 
Analogy and Similitade in the Generation 
of all Animal3, whether Bipeds or Qua- 
drupeds, it occurred to me^ that what 
had happened to a Mare, might for this 
very Reafon, happen to a Woman, 

Thus was I got fuccefsfully through 
two Stcps of my Difcovery : The great 
WooUaJlon has toid me, that Animalcula 
were difperfed about in opportune Places^ 
to be the Seed of all Generations j and 
the greater Virgil had told me, that cer- 
tain Mares of his Acquaintance were 
were impregnated by a Weft Wind, 
which therefore I concluded to be one 
of thofe opportune Places^ and confidered 
it as the proper Vehicle of thefe floating 
Embryos. ^ 

But not willing to rely on Hypothefis 
pnly, or prefume on the Authority of 


( 15 )^ 
grear Names, -efpecially in this enlighten- 

e4 Age, where experimental Philofophy 

i^ fo triumphant, and nothing goes dowa 

that is not made obvious to our Senfes, 

I refolved to have Demonftration before 

I ventured to publifli my Thoughts to the 

World. There are, I know, a droll Set 

of Gentlemen, who think themfelves 

authorized to tell any Lies in Print, and 

afterwards to quarrel with the World for 

not believing them : But for my Part, I 

write purely and jSmply for the Love of 

Truth, for the Ufe and Emolument of 

my Countrymen ; and I Ihould efteem 

myfelf the moft unworthy of all Beings, 

if I prcfumed to amufe them with Fa- 

bles, or abufe them with Forgeries. 

Accordingly after much Exercife ot 
my Invention, I contrived a wonderfiil 
cylindrical, catoptrical, rotundo-concavo-^ 
convex Machine (whereof a very exadt 
Print will fpeedily be publifhed for the Sa- 
tisfadtion of the Curious, defigned by 


( iS ) 
Mr. M — y--^Jt, and engravec! by Mr. 
Y^^rtu) which being hermetically fealed 
at one End, and eleftrified according to 
the nicell Laws of Eledlricity, t ere£ted 
it in a convenient Attitude to the Wcft^ 
as a kind of Trap to intercept the float- 
ing Animalcula in that prolific Quarter bf 
the Heavens. The Eveat anfwered my 
Expedation ; ahd when I had caught a 
fufficient Number of thefe Itnail^ originali 
unexpanded Minims of Exiftence, 1 
fpread them out carefuUy like Silk-worm's 
Eggs upon White-Paper, ahd then apply» 
ing my beft Microfcrope, plainly difcern» 
ed them to be little Men and Women^ 
exadt in all their Limbs and Lineaments^ 
and ready to offer themfelves little Can-« 
didates for Life, whenever they fht)uld 
happen to be imbibed with Air or Nu- 
triment, and eonveyed down into the 
Veflels of Generation» 

After this firfl Succefs in riiy Under- 
takingi I continued to make Experiments 



b£ various Kinds, too tedious to be relat- 
ed, for a whole Year, till I had at length 
fully eftablifhed the Dodrine of Winds 
and Embryos : and I iind that as other In^ 
feds are ufually brought by an Eafterly 
Wind, your thimnn Infe^fs are always 
wafted from the oppofite Quarter : the 
Swarms of both appear like Blights to the 
haked Eye, and both feem deftined to 
much the fame End of Exiftence, fruges 
confumere naii^ born to confume the Fruits 
of the Ground, 

OftentimeSj while I Was viewing them 
through my Glafs, my Imagination wou^d 
turn romantic upon the Subjed, and re-* 
prefent to me the great Variety of For- 
tune thefe Infefts might go through, 
whenevier they fhould happen to be called 
out into Day-light. I faid in my Mind, 
this littk Reptile may be an Alexandcr, 
that a Faujiinay another a Tully^ and ano- 
thcr a Mountebank ; and I was ftruck 
with Adrhiration to confider how many 
D Heroes^ 

( i8 ) 

Heroes, and Patriots, and Legiflators, and 
Monarchs, were now contained on a Sheet 
of Paper, whofe great Souls in Time to 
come, may make them efteem the whole 
World too confined a Scene for their Am- 
bitipn. I remembered the Sarcafm of 
Juvenal^ as true before Life as after Death, 
Expenden Annibaleniy &c. and I repeated 
with a kind of Enthufiafm thofe excellent 
Lincs in Dr. Garth'% Difpenfary 5 

]<!owfjeu?ifoIds thejainf anddawning Sfrife 

Oj infanf Atoms kindling into Life -, 

How the dim Speck of Entity began 

^o extend ifs recent Form^ ajidflretchtoMan^ 

To how minufe an Origifi we owe 

Toimg Ammon^Caefar, and fhegreatNaffd.u, 

But now the great Trial of all was 
come, which I believe would have puz- 
:zled a whole College of Phyficians, and 
fet at nought all the confulting Powers of 
W~rw — k-Lane. The preparatory Points 
were eftabliflicd to my entire Satisfad:ion, 


( 19 ) 

but whether Animalcula could be rlpen*d 
i;ito Exiftence by paffing through the fe- 
minal Veffels of a Woman only, was ftill 
a Queftion ; and how to make the Expe- 
riment, hic lahor^ illud cpus. Very hard it 
was to know when a Woman had imbib- 
ed the neceffary Seed, and harder ftill to 
reftrain her from all Commerce with 
Man, till the Experiment had Time to 
take Effed;. If I made Choice of a mar- 
ried Woman, there the Difficuhies were 
innumerable 5 or if I made Choice of a 
Maiden, Virginity has in all Ages been 
efteemed a very brittle Ware, and I 
prefume has not greatly mended its Na- 
ture of later Days, Sometimes I thought 
of taking a Wife, over whom I could 
ilfurp an abfolute Authority, and lock her 
up till the Day of her Labour ; but fear- 
ing ftie might grow defperate, when fhe 
lhou'd find I had only married her to try 
aa Experiment upon her, and at the fame 
time grievoufly miftrufting the Continu- 
aace of my own Affediion, after I had ac- 
D z com^ 

( 2P ) 

compliflied my Ends, I difmlffed that Pro*: 
jedl, and refolved, after much Perplexity, 
to ha^ard all upon a Chambermaid. Ac- 
cordingly having firft perfv^^aded the Girl 
flie v^as ill, I read Jacob Behmen fiveTimes 
over, and then mixingup {om^ Animalcula 
in a Chymical Preparation, I adminifter'(i 
them to her as a Dofe of Phyfick. After 
which I difcarded my Footman, and fuf= 
fer'd no Male Creature in human Shape 
to approach my Doors ; nay fo great was 
my Caution to have my Stratajem fuc» 
ceed, that I hardly permitted a Dog of the 
mafculine Qend^ r tp enter niy Houfe, 

Ia about fix Months it was very vifible 
the Medicine had taken Efi^ed:, and let 
the Reader imagine if he can, the Joy I 
felt, when firft I perceived her begin to 
bourgeon : At the fame time too a little 
Circuniftance happened, which heighten» 
ed my Joy, and put the manner of her 
Conceptionbeyond all Pofllbility of doubto 
As I w^s fitting alqne one Morning in my 


( aO 

Study, ruminating on this great Event, 
the Girl came in to me with Tears in he? 
Eyes, and having obtained my Leave to 
aflc a Queiiion, entreated me earneftly tQ 
tell her, if it was poffible to breed after 
three Tears ? Though I gueffed the Drift 
of her (^oeftionj yet affeding an Air of 
Ignorance, and putting on a grave Phy- 
lician's Afpedl, I ordered her to be more 
explicit j whereupon ftie proceeded, with 
frequent Breaksof Crying, to tell me how 
much ftie was aftoniflied at fome Symp- 
toms, that Heaven above knew what was 
the Matter with her^ but Jhe verily believed 
herfelf a breeding^ and ytt fie cotild take 

her Bible Oath^ Jhe had not been -« 

been-^been touched by a Manfor thefe three 
Tcars,^ So then, faid I, with a ftern- 

f Whqn I wrote this, I had not feen a remarkable 
flafe publifhed in the Philofophlcal Tra?ifaSila7i5 cf 
Beptember^ of a Woman, from whom a Foetus was 
CxtracEled, that had been lodged thirteen Years in the 
^aUopzan Tubes, fent from Riga by Dr. James MQun- 
fy% Phyficiaii to the Czarinas. Armyj together with 


( 22 ) 

cr Countenance and a Tone of Severity, 
You confefs then that about three Years 
agO:, you was guilty of Incontinency ! — • 
Xes Sir, replied fhe, to befure it would be 
A FoUy to deny it tQ a Man of your 


the Bones of the faid Foetus, as a Prefent to the Royal 
Socieiy of Londm, The Woman, as we are told in 
•that ingenious Treatife, was a Soldier's Wife of Aho in 
Finlandj ofa mtddle Stature^who being pregnant for the 
thirdTime in theYear 1730, was afflided with violent 
Pains and Twiftings of the Bowels, ^^.— and con- 
tinuing fickly fcr ten Years afterwards, in the Month 
of September 174I5 ^^ plerced her Navel with an 
Awl, out of which ran a yellow-coloured Water, &-c» 
— In the Month oVJune two fmall Bones carrie out,^^ 
and in OSiober 1742, flie was taken in Hand by Dr, 
Mounfey and Mr,G^zVZ? Surgeon, whothrufla grooved 
Probe into the Ftjiula^ and made an Incifion with a 
Biftory, upwards and obliquely, from the Linea albOy 
into the Cavity of the Abdomen ; but the Woman be- 
ing unruly (as well fhe might) and the Operation 
•lot going on according to the DD(3:or's liking, he 
proceeded no farther till the next Day, l^c, At the 
Bext Operation the Incifton was carried downwards, 
^c. but Care taken not to make the external Wound 
larger than needful, left the Omentum and Guts 
ihould faJj outj C?V.wIn {hort, theFoetus was st 


i^3) ; 

Learning ^-^ to be fure I miifl con^ 
Jefs that ahout three Tears ago^to befure 
Sir^ I was not quite fo good, Sir^ ds I 
fhould havs been, Sir.~My lafl Majier^ 
Siry Tvho was a Parfon^ Sir^ — Godforgi^ve 
him and me too^-^ — / a?n fure^ I have 
repented it a hundred 'Times^ and 1 hope he 
has dofte the fame,^ — ~ The courteous 
Reader, I hope, will pardon my defcend- 
ing to fuch low Particulars, which I con- 
fefs are beneath the Dignity of a Philo- 
Ibpher ; but as it very much concerns me, 


kngth extra<Sed Piece-meal at feveral difficult Ope- 
rations, Now comparing all thefe Circumftances to- 
gether, it feems reafonable to beiieve that this Fruit 
never was in the Cavity of the Womb, but that the 
impregnatedOw/Tz was ftopt in its PafTage through one 
of the Fallopian Tubes, where it grew and was de" 
tained fo many Years. Nothing therefore can be con- 
cluded from hence againft the Caufe I have aftigned 
of my Maid's Pregnancy (as a certain learned Gen- 
deman of the Royal Society^ who communicated this 
Story to me, feemed to imagine ) for the Cafes 
are very difFerent, and the uncommon Delay of this 
Finland Woman's Delivery was owing to the praeter- 
natural Situation of the Fcetus. 


( H ) 

in ^n Affair of fuch Momeat and Im^ 
portance to the World, to fhew how re- 
gularly and cautioufly I proceeded, it was 
neceflary to defcribe the GirPs Simplici» 
ty as a Proof her Honefty. Authors who 
write only for the Amufement of Man° 
kind, may chufe and omit Circumftances 
at their ov^n Pleafure^ according to th© 
Rule of i£?r^r^ 

Defperes fraSiata nitefcerepoffe^ relinquasl 

But we who are unfortunately tied 
down to Truth, muft write as it were in 
Fetters, and are obliged to keep on in the 
dired: Roadj without the Privilege of turn- 
ing afide to entertain ourfelves with Pro- 
^eds* Be it fufficient^ however^ to fay, 
that at the nine Months End, the Girl il 
was delivered of a ciiopping Boy, whoiil - ; 
I have ever fince ^ucated as my own^ " 
fpite of a^ the Calumny of the Neighbour- 
hood^ anct 1 cannot doubt^ but in tirii^ 

( ^5 ) 
he will rife to be a Judge or an A!der« 

Thus, Gentlemen of the R~I S—y^- 
I hope I have proved in the moft incon- 
teftable manner^ that a Woman may con" 
ceive without any Commerce with Man ; 
that the World has been in an Error for 
fix thoufand Years, and probabiy would 
iiave continued in it fix thoufand more^ if 
I had not been born on purpofe to break 
thro' iilly Prejudices of Education, and 
undeeeive Mankind in fo material a Point. 
Material I muft call it ; for how difrerent 
is this from all the Difcoveries of Ifaac 
Newton the Star-gazer ? His, all of them,. 
end in Speculation, but mine extend to 
Praftice ; his are only calculated for the 
Perufal of a few CoUege-Pedant?, but 
mine ofFer themfelves to the World in ge- 
lieral : And I fhall ihortly publifh a large 
Volume to fhew that this is the moft na- 
tural Way of being born, grounding my 
Demonftration on the following infallibie 
Argument^ whieh 1 have drawn up fyiio- 
E giilicaily 

( 26 ) 

giftically, to prove my wonderful Talents 
in Logic. 

* Nature (fay certain Authors of great 
Erudition) is a very frugal old Lady^ 
and a prodigious good Oeconomift : 
She is obferved to give herfelf as 
little Trouble as jfhe can, and to do 
every thing at the cheapeft hand. 

But Animalcula may be hatched as 
compleatly in a Female Womb, as 
when they take the more tedious Pro- 
grefs thro' the Loins of the Males 

ErgOy That is the right Road into Life, 
which is the iGhorteft Road. 

And now— what fhall I fay next ? As 
k often happens that the Ufe and Pradlice 
of a Thing are known, before the Theory 
of it is difcovered, (for Liftance^ Men of 


^ This is a Method much pra^lifed by the learned 
Mr. JV—rb—n^ I fuppofe for the fame Reafony to 
fhew his Skill m chopping Logic, 


WarGouId batter downTowns withBombs 

long before it was proved that Proje^liles 

defcribe a parabolic Curve, and little Boys 

had amufed themfelves with the Shadows 

of a magic Lanthorn many a Day ere fome 

great Philofophers undertook to explain 

the Myfteries of that wonderfiil Machine) 

fo has it fallen out in the Subjecft now un- 

der our Coniideration : Hiftory has here 

and there furnifhed an Example, and fome 

Phyficians of Antiquity have accidentally 

glanced upon the Subjed: ; but ftill I think 

I may challenge to myfelf the Merit of 

an original Invention, and it would be 

very hard if a few Hints loofely dropt in 

old unfafliionable Authors, which too I 

never faw till after I had eftablifhed my 

Theory, fhould prevail fo far as to fix up« 

on me the odious Scandal of Plagiarifm. 

There are, I know, a Sort of malevolent 

Readers, who take an infinite Pleafure in 

telling you that all Authors have flolen 

their Works fince the Days of one Or- 

pheus j and hov^ lucky is it for that old 

E 2 Frencb 


French Poet, that we know not the Names 
of any of his Predeceffors ? but more efpe- 
cially they have recourfe to this Device, 
whenever they find it not quite fo eafy to 
anfwer the Dodrine of a Bookj and yet 
are determined to cry down its Reputa- 
tion : Then we are fure to hear, Lord Sir! 
the FeHow Jlole it ally there is not a Page^ 
72or a Line^ nor a V/ord^ nor a SyUabley 
72or a Letter^ nor a Corama of it his own ; 
I can turn to the very Book and Place^ from 
whefice he pilfer'd it alL Now that I may 
anticipate this heavy Cenfure, and fave 
certain ingenious Critics the Trouble of 
turning back to the good old Writer (Peace 
unto his Manes^ whoever he be) from 
whom I tranfcribed this ^'itle Treatife, I 
have determined to produce of my own 
accord what few Pafiages I have acciden- 
tally met with upon this Subjedl, and af- 
terwards I ihall leave the World to decide, 
whether in fpite of fuch occafional Hints, 
I may not ftili be allowed to be the fole 
Proprietor of this wonderful Hypothefis. 


( 29 ) 

Galen^ In hls celebrated Treatife iipon 
the Meafles, wherein he endeavours to 
account for the Orlgln of that Diftemper, 
dellvers It as a common Oplnion, that it 
was brought Into the World by a Woman, 
born wlthout the Afliftance of a Father ; 
but he feems to treat thls as a vulgar Fable, 
and calls It a Notion of the Multitiide. 

Hippocrates informs us, that his Mother 
ufed frequently to tell him, fhe had no 
carnal Intercourfe wlth hls Father for near 
two Years before hls Blrth, but thac flie 
foundherfelf ftrangely Influenced oneEven- 
ing, as flie was walking in a Garden. His 
Father obtained a Dlvorce on thss Occa- 
fion, and the good Woman fell under the 
Reproach of all her Acquaintance : Bat I 
hope this Treatife will vlndicate her Me-- 
mpry from the Infamy, which has ever 
fince attended it through all fucceedirig 



If we look back 16 the fabulous Agcs 
of the World, when every thing was ag- 
grandized by poetic Ornament, we read 
of many ancient Ladies, got with Child 
by fuch impoffible Methods, that I believe 
they muft have owed their Pregnancy to 
what I have been defcriblng, and I hope 
all Commentators and Mythologifts will 
fof the future fall in with my Explication. 
For what elfe are we to think of yuno's 
growing big-be!lied only with eating a 
Piece of Cabbage, -f- which Flora ga- 
thered for her in the Olenian Fields ? 'Tis 
plain flie muft have fwallowed fome Ani- 
malcula at the fame time, and thus be- 
came with Child of Mars, How elfe are 
we to account for the odd Conception of 
Danae in her Imprifonment ? Some old 


f ^odpetis^ Oimiis, inquam^ mihi mijjus ah arvis 
Flos dabit ; eji hortis unicus ille meis. 
Protinus hdsrentem decerpji pollice Jlorem 
Fitque potens votiy Marsque creatus erat, 

Ovid. Faftc 5. 

(31 ) 

Oracle had foretold, that her Father Acri^ 
Jhis {hould have his Throat cut by a Grand- 
fon, and to defeat this Prediftion, he lock- 
ed up his only Daughter in a brazen Tower, 
under fuch clofe Confinement, that it was 
impoffible for any thing but Wind to get 
Accefs to her -, yet in thefe Circumftances 
the Lady was brought to Bed of the moll 
mighty Perfeus, who accomplifhed the 
Oracle in putting Acrifius to death. The 
Poets indeed tell us a ftrange improbable 
Story of Jupiter's raining himfelf thro* 
theTiles of the Houfe in a golden Shower • 
but this is plainly a poetic Ficftion, invent- 
ed to account for a puzzling Phaenome- 

The Story of Boreas' running away 
with a young Heirefs out of a Garret Win- 
dow, and getting her with Child (as Ovid 
defcribes it in his Metamorphofis) is more 
immediately to our Purpofe, and diredtly 
points out the Manner cf her Conception, 
We all know, that 'tis the ProfeiTion of 


( sO 

Poetry ta per fonalize all its Objects, and if 
a Lady fodnd herfelf impregnated with 
Wind, nothing was fo natural as to make 
a God of that Element, and impute the 
Effedts to fupernatural J Power : tho' I 
confefs there is an Impropriety here ac- 
cording to my Syftem, but that may be 
owing to the Loofenefs of poetic Defcrip- 
tion, or perhaps the Lady miftook the 
C^arter of the Wind in telhng her Story, 
In general we may conelude, whenever 
we read of Virgins got with Child by Ri- 
vers, by Dragons, by golden Showers, &c, 
&c, that it was Wind, nothing in the 
World but Wind, only for want of know- 
ing the real Caufe, they were glad to affign 
imaginary ones^ and the Poets getting 
hold of fuch improveable Topics, fo over- 
loaded them with Additions of their own, 


J In this manner we niuft interpret what Ovid puts 
into the Mouth of FIorcTy where fhe tells us fhe was 
raviihed by Zephyrus^ 

Ver erat^ erraham ; Zephyrus confpexit^ ahiba^n : 
Infequitur^ fugio : fortior ille fuit. 

Lib. V. Faft. 201. etdehina 

■^ r 33 ) 

that in the End they were all confidered 
ia the Light of Fable and Romance. 

If we defcend frorn thefe allegoric Ages 
to fucceeding Times, when Hiftory had 
learnt a more fober Style, and was con- 
tented to tell Truth without Difguife, we 
fhall find fome few Examples here alfo to 
our Purpofe. Diodorus Siculus informs iiSj 
in an old Edition of his Works, communi-^ 
cated to me by my learned and induftrious 
Friend the Rev, Dr. T- — r, that a cer-* 
tain Sorcerefs of Egypf^ pretended, among 
other fupernatural Claims, to be ab!e to 
breed without the Help of Man^ and un- 
der Colour of thefe Pretences would have 
perfwaded People to beheve her the cele^ 
brated IJis^ returned to viiit her native 
Coantry^ but at laft a Prieft of Taautus or 
Mercury was found in Bed with her, and 
fo the AfFair was at an End. 

Polybius has a Story more explicitly to 
mx Purpofe, but he fpeaks of it with fo 

F mucli 

( 34 ) 

much dillruft himfelf, that I wIU not 
venture to produce it, lefl: it fhould give 
an Air of Romance to this Perfor- 
mance -f-. 

Among the Roman Hifiorians I can 
only produce an Example from Livy^ of a 
Woman who was reported to have boen 
dehvered of Twins in a defolate unin- 
habited Ifland, where flie was caft away, 
and had not k>tw a human Face for the 
Space of nine Years before her Labour. 
He tells us fhe was brought to Rome^ and 
examined before the Roman Senate ; but 
the Particulars of this Story are fo very 
proHx and tedious, that I chufe to refer 
the Reader to the Original, in the fiftieth 
Book of that incomparable Hlftorian. 


Polyh. Lib. IIL pag. 230, 


This is all I have been able to meet 
with in my reading j which I was willing 
to produce, as it may give fome Light and 
Confirmation to my Hypothefis • but I 

appeal to the illuftrious Mr. ff^ r^ — n^ 

that great Becider of old Problems and 
modern Controverfies, who well knows th.e 
Zeal of Authors to have their Works 
thought original, whether notwithftand- 
ing any thing here quoted, the Merit of 
this great ylrcanum does uot of right be- 
long to me ? I mention that Gentleman's 
Name, who now unqueftionably ftands 
foremoft in the Catalogue of Britijh Wri- 
ters, with the moft profound Refpedl ; 
and it would afford me infinite Pleafure, if 
he would give this Subjeft a Difcufiion in 
the next Volume of the Divine L^g — ;/, 
whenever he pleafes to oblige the World 
with that long-expefted Work : Or if by 
Ch^nce he fhould happen not to have 
F 2 Room 


Room for it, being already furnijfhGd with 
his Complement of Digreilions (sind to be 
ftire onc Book can hardly contain every 
thing^ ftill I have the Vanity to exped a 
Letter from him by the firft Poft to thank 
me according tc Cuitom, for the hono- 
rable Mention I have made of him, and 
with fome Comphmects on my Perfor^ 
mance, to make an Oveinure pf his Ac- 

It now remains, before I conclude, to 
explain the great Advantages that will flow 
from the Pubhcation of this Treatife ; for 
this it is, vvhich m.uft redeem me from 
the reproachful Name of a Projed:or, and 
rank me in the Numxber of thofe iiluf-. 
trious Wortbies, who have invented ufe- 
ful Arts for the better Accommodation and 
Happinefs of human Life,"^ 


"^ Lvusntas aut qui vltam excoluere per arteS:^ ViRQ» 
Quotcd for ths Sake of a Quotatio|i, 

( 37) 

And in the firft Pkce, I hope I fliall 
merit univerfally the Thanks of all the 
Fair Sex for difabufing Mankind on the 
Subjed: of Conception, and teaching them 
how a Woman may be with Child in a 
fingle State, confiftently with the pureft 

Cur ego defperemfieri fine Conjuge Mater^ 
Et parere intaBo^ dummodo cajla^i^iro ? 

But before this was known, when tlic 
World was foolilh enough to fuppofe Coi- 
tion always previous to Conception, how 
manyLadies have innocently loft theirRepu- 
tation ? how many unhappy Creatures have 
fallen under the Cenfures of a malicious 
World, been excluded from Vifits, left out 
of Card-Parties, and pointed at by Prudes, 
only for the flight Inconvenience of hap^. 
pening to be brought to Bed before Mar- 

riage ? 

( 3S ) 

riage ? Whereas, when once this Difcove- 

ry is fpread, it will be eafy for a young 
Lady to lofe her Maidenhead without lof- 
ling her Characler, and to take the Air 
without any Dread of Calumny and Re- 
proach in Confequence of fo innocent a 

^am redit et virgo^ redeunt Saturnia regna^ 
Jam mva progenies ccelo demittitur alto, 

Another great Benefit, refulting from 
this Difcoveryj will be the utter Abolition 
of Matrimony, which has long bcen com- 
p^ained of by all the polite World, as a 
Nufance grievous and intolerable, incon- 
liftent with all the Articles of modern 
Pleafure, and deftruftive of that Freedom 
which of Right belongs to Gentlemen. 
In coiifeqiience whereof, we fee Dukes 
and Dutchefles, Lords and Ladies, and all 
the Great, whoring, divorcing, poifon- 


( 39 ) 

ing one another, ftarving one another, 
cutting one another's Throats, and prac-* 
tifing every other genteel fafhionable Art to 
break loofe from their Fetters, and refcue 
themfelves from this worfe than Egyp^ 
tian Bondage. Now as I am a mofl: de- 
voted Admirer of the Great, apt to efteem 
every thing wife, lawful and right, that 
Gomes from the Mouth of a Nobleman, 
I account myfelf happy to be Author of 
a Scheme, that falls in fo naturally with 
their Defires, and will deliver them from 
that moft pernicious Inftitution, fupport- 
ed by no other Authority than that of the 
Scriptures, an Authority long obfolete and 
out of Date with the politer Part of Man- 
kind ! And as I cannot doubt but all 
Women for the future will chufe to pro- 
pagate the Species upon the Plan here 
recommended, | can afilire them for their 
Comfort, that their SatisfacSion will be as 
great in this Way as in the ordinary and 


( 4o) 
coarfer Communication with Man : which 
indeed the Fondnefs that Ladies have al- 
ways expreffed for Zephyrs^ abundantly 
proves, though hitherto they have been 
ignorant ofthe Caufe of the agreeable Sen- 
fations excited by that amorous Wind. 

But the moft capital Advantage of all 
remains yet to be told^ and in defcribing 
of this I muft exalt my Styk : 

Major reruni mihi nafcitur ordo^ 

Majus opus fnoveo. 

There is a certain Diftemper moft fatally 
epidemic, which has much employed the 
Speculation, and more the Pradlice of 
Mankind. Whether with Phyficians we 
call it the Lues Venerea, with Tothecaries 
the Venereal Difeafe, with Ladies the 
French Difie?}?per, or with fine- Gentle- 
men the P—x • it is known by all thefe 

Cenoniinations, befides an infinite Num-^ 
ber 6f inferior Titles, that mark the feve- 
jral Stages 6f this puiiTant^ deliroying Pef« 

•^ — - i — Nomina milte^ 
Mille nocendi artes, 

i^ome tell you that Columbm brought it 
bver from his new American World in a 
Ean-box:, and that is nothiiig more than 
thc Yaws operatirig differently upon £^- 
ropean Conftitutions -^, Others are con- 
tented to go no farther for it than France^ 
and very cbnfidently affure us, thatit was 

G im- 

f However fome feoplc may contend for the mo- 
dern Introdu6lion of this Diftemper, I am perfwaded 
it,is as oH as the Days of Hercuh^^ and that this illuf-» 
trious Giant-killer was infeited wifn it. The enve- 
nbmed Shirt of Nejfus^ and the Torments he fuf- 
fered by putting it oh, are plaihly a Poetick AUegory, 
"Which I interpret in the fc^ov/ing eafy Mannen— 
'Nejfiis p-x^d his Whore, and fhe p — x'd HercuUi, 


impdrted hither among other clegaftt 
Accomplifhments, for whieh we havd 
been indebted to that Land of Luxury 
and Refinement* But though its Origin 
be doubtful and uncertain, its Atchieve- 
ments are unqueftionably fure ; and, oh, 
that I had the Pen of Fraca/iorius to de- 
fcribe the Ravage it commits upon a hu- 
man Body ! Lend^ lend me Affiftance all 
ye battered Rakes, while with blackeft 
Ink I undertake to paint the Havocks o£ 
that honourable Difeafe, of which thou- 
fands of your Forefathers have died, and 
whereof yourfelves fo vain-glorioufly boaft 
in Taverns and Coifee-houies^ to the 
great Advancement of Virt^e and Mora- 

iity. Say, illuftrious and — -*- and 

** — ^, for ye know, wich what fatai Rapi-* 
dity its Venom ov^r-runs the Conftitti- 
tion, how it ui^dcrmines the Teeth, un- 
hinges the Mr^xe, foddens the Flefh, ftrikeg 
Rpttennefs co the Bones, and poifons the 
very fpinrtl Marrow* Say, farther, moft 


(43 ) 

cnviable Sons of Pleafure ! for this alfo 
Experience may have taught you, how it 
ipreads by Contagion, and operates by 
Communication. Some Hufbands give it 
their Wives, and fome Wives give it 
their Hufbands. Nor does the Evil end 
with Life, but revives again in the Pofle- 
jrity, \% entailed on the Heirs of great Fa- 
milies, inherited in fure Succeflion, and 
oftentimeSj too often, proves the only 
thing that is inherited by Heirs of noble, 
tut corrupted Blood. Hence arifes an 
enervated Progeny^ weak in their Perfons, 
and weaker in theif Underflandings ^ a 
puny, ill-compounded, unmanly Race, 
who bear aboftt them the Marks of their 
Father's Wickedr^fs in mofl legible Cha- 
rafters, and though Hable to be blown 
away by every Blafl cf Wind, have the 
Arrogance to flrut througln the M^//with 
Swords by their Sides, and fancy them- 
felves Men. Alasl their Mother's Cham- 
bermaids wou'd make better Men. 



(44) • .^ 

Non his juventm orta parentihm 
Jnfecit cequor Janguine Gallico, 

Nqw this Diftemper, fo terrible in it§ 
JEifedls, and fo pernicious in its CqnfcT 
quences, has been attacked for many CeuT 
turies by all the Efculapian Art in vain jf 
*f Mercury has exhaufled all its fruidefs 
Powers; Salivations exerted their cleanfin^ 
influence without Effeft, and the mighty 
Ward with his illuilrious Pill iits defpair- 
ing in an Elbow-chair at Whitehall^ to, 
find himfelf defeatqd by this inyincible 
Difeafe, But what neither phyfical Pre- 
fcriptionsj nor chirurgipal Operatrc^ns, what 
neither Empirics with their PJ^ls, npr Gra- 
duates of the Faculty witt their Purgess 
have been able to accor^plifii s I pretend 
to perform in a fafe, eafy, effeftual man- 
ner, (abfit fuperbia diBo) and for ever to 


^ Cafar t^s us our old Briujh Anceftors worfhipeci 
Mercury above all the Gods, Deum maxims Mercurium 
colunt^ &c. Their modern Defcendants ftill worlhiij 
the fame Deity, 

< 45 ) 

drive out the P~x from his Majefty's Dov 
ininions. If all in female Shape (for I dare 
i3ot call them all Women) wil! agree to fe- 
clude themfelves from the foul Embraces 
o£ Men for one Year (w^hich I account a 
yery modeft Propofal, as I offer them a 
better Gratiiication in licu of what they 
are to forfeit) this ruinous Plague muft 
ceafe from among uSe And I humbly re- 
commend it, \yith all due Submiffion, to 
the Judgment and Gonfideration pf the 
moft honourabie the L,^ — ds of the P. Q 
whether a R — 1 Edid would not be well 
employ 'd, to forbid all Copulation throughr 
out the Klngdom for the Space pf one 
whole Year, beginning from Lady-day 
n,ext, iiii prder to ftop the Growth and lur 
cireafc of a Contagion much more fatal 
than that which now fweeps away our 
hprned Cattle, and equally deferving the 
Interpofition of Authority. 

But Objedlors ftill may be apt to quc- 
ftjpn, whether yopr dQtihk-difliW d Chil- 



dren, who pafs thro* the feminal Veflels of 
both Sexes m the old way of Generation, 
are not of courfe more healthy and vigo* 
rous, thtn yonr fingle-diftill^d Infants will 
be, who are to receive only the Nurture 
of a female Wonab ? In Confutation of 
which fiUy Prejudice, tho* I could produce 
feveral veiy cogent Arguments from the 
Depth of Philofophy, yet I chufe to an* 
fwer this Query by another, Whether the 
prefent Rac€ of Fathers, efpecially thofe 
in high Life, under the Circumftances I 
Jiave defcribed^ are qualify'd to beget Chi^ 
dren at all ? But when Women are left to 
breed of themifelvee, and the Vcnereal Dif^ 
cafe is banilhed frbm among us, we iriay 
then hope to fee an Ofi^spring robuft and 
healthy ; Brifijh Valour will th^n rccover 
its ancient Glory j new Crejfys^ new Agin^ 
courtSy new Bknheims fucceed to grace our 

Nor Henry be tbe lafi that conquers France; 



Wherefore not doubting butmyScheme 
will immediately.taRe place, I fhall apply 
very foon for a Pateat to fecurc to 
myfelf the fole Advantage of this Dif- 
covery, and in the mean time I have taken 
a Houfe in the Hay-market^ dans la mar^ 
cbe aufoin^ where I fhall give Attendance 
to all Women defirous of breeding, from 
the Hours of Seven or Eight in the Even- 
ing till Tv/elve at Nightj and if they^will 
quietly fubmit themfelves to my Experi- 
mentj I will enfure their Pregnancy at the 
proper Time^ calculating from the Hour 
they did me the Favour of their Vilit. Let 
them confider that the Glory and Intereft 
of Great Brifain are now incumbe?2t upon 
them, that it is in their Power to raife our 
Vigour^ and as I may fay, to mend the 
Breed of Englijhmen, In fo doing their 
Names vvill be recorded in Hiflory, asthfj 
illuflrious Propagators of Heroifm, tiie 
Founders of a ncw Sedl of Men, anc^i be 
handed down to Pofteriey equally fainous 



Witli the Spartan ^nd Roman Ladics, whdfe 

many gallaht Atchievements for the Good 

cf their Countries iil Times of Diftrefsj 

engaged Poets sand Hiftorians in their 


But principally and earheftly I addrefs 

myfelf to you, Gentlemen of the R— 1 

S— y, wbojhine in the Dignity of F, R. Se. 

and I hope you will recommcnd this Trea* 

tife to the World with all the Warmth 

atid Zealj that becomes the Promoters of 

ufeful Knowledge, the Patrons of Learn-^ 

ingi the Judges pf Seience^ and the In^ 

veftigators of Truth» 

I am, Gentlemen, with all pofllble 
Refpea, Deference, Submiffion and Yc^ 

Your moft obedient, humble, 

devoted Servant, 

Abraham Johnson. 
F i /7 I S.